Nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) is a derivative of the B-vitamin niacin that dramatically improves health and longevity by serving as a precursor to NAD+, a compound that plays a crucial role in energy production, metabolism, and gene expression in the body. When we boost NMN levels in the body, we can enhance the biosynthesis of NAD+ and alleviate symptoms associated with depletion of this crucial nutrient. In fact, NMN supplementation has been found to improve various parameters of health, including physical endurance and muscle strength, neurological function, heart health, insulin sensitivity, body weight, and gene expression.
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The Biochemistry of NMN
To understand how NMN benefits the body, it helps to first have some background knowledge of the biochemistry of this potent compound. Nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) is a compound derived from ribose, a sugar, and nicotinamide, also known as vitamin B3. The human body has enzymes that use NMN to generate another compound, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide. Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide comes in two forms: An oxidized form (NAD+) which accepts electrons from other molecules and a reduced form (NADH) that donates electrons to other molecules. From here on we will refer to nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide as NAD+, but remember that it does come in these two forms.
NAD+ has two crucial, primary functions in the body:
- NAD+ participates in redox reactions. Redox reactions are those that involve a transfer of electrons from one reaction or molecule to another. The most well-known redox reaction in the body is cellular energy production, which includes glycolysis, the citric acid cycle, and mitochondrial respiration. NAD+ serves a vital role in each of these components of energy production.
- NAD+ is a substrate for enzymes that add or remove chemical groups from proteins. For example, NAD+ functions as a cofactor for sirtuins, proteins that regulate DNA transcription, apoptosis, inflammation, and mitochondrial biogenesis and assist in the function of poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase, a group of proteins that regulate DNA repair and genomic stability.
Low NAD+ Leads to Disease and Aging
Research has found that NAD+ levels decrease in aging and certain chronic disease states. The loss of NAD+ limits redox reactions and deprives enzymes of the substrate they need to function correctly; this ultimately leads to an energy deficit that impairs DNA expression and repair, promotes inflammation, and downregulates metabolism. However, a growing body of research indicates that restoration of optimal NAD+ levels can reverse many of the symptoms associated with chronic disease and aging. How can we naturally boost the body’s levels of NAD+? The solution lies with NMN supplementation.
The Many Health Benefits of NMN
Endurance and Muscle Strength
Decreased physical endurance and muscle strength are often considered to be “inevitable” symptoms of the normal aging process. However, recent animal research indicates that NMN can prevent these declines in aging mice. In fact, one study found that consumption of NMN enhanced endurance and muscle strength in aged mice to such a degree that they became as healthy as their much-younger peers! (1)(2)
Endurance and muscle strength are not the only physical symptoms impacted by the aging process; body weight, energy metabolism, blood lipids, insulin sensitivity, and vision are also adversely affected by the aging process. Excitingly, NMN supplementation has been found to suppress age-associated weight gain, enhance metabolism, improve insulin sensitivity and plasma lipid levels, benefit vision, and prevent adverse alterations in gene expression in aging mice. (3) These effects highlight the therapeutic potential of NMN as a beneficial anti-aging intervention for humans.
The human heart requires a continuous supply of ATP to fuel its muscular contractions and sustain life. Interruptions in the heart’s ATP supply can impair cardiac and vascular function and contribute to the development of cardiovascular disease. By enhancing the biosynthesis of NAD+, an essential substrate in ATP-producing reactions, NMN boosts cardiac ATP levels and significantly improves heart health. Importantly, NMN also reduces arterial aging and vascular dysfunction, two phenomena that play crucial roles in the pathogenesis of cardiovascular disease. (4)
Your DNA serves as the blueprint for your body’s physiological function. When DNA expression goes awry due to factors such as an unhealthy diet, environmental toxins, and aging, your body’s blueprint is intrinsically altered; this disrupts normal body function and contributes to the development of chronic health conditions such as cancer, diabetes, and neurological dysfunction. NMN helps prevent adverse changes in gene expression by repairing damaged DNA. (5)
Weight gain and weight loss resistance are common struggles for countless Americans. NMN is a powerful nutraceutical ally in weight loss efforts because it reverses insulin resistance, improves glucose tolerance, and ameliorates mitochondrial dysfunction, three factors that contribute to stubborn weight issues. (6)(7)
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
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